The Hot Potato

Composed By: Guy Farley

Distributed by: MovieScore Media

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                Based on true events, The Hot Potato takes place in London's East End in 1969.  Kenny (Ray Winstone) and Danny (Jack Huston) accidentally come into possession of a mysterious box containing a large lump of what they eventually discover to be weapons grade Uranium.  Once they realize what they have and how dangerous it is, it becomes extremely important for them to offload the item.  Unfortunately, this means working with Harry (Colm Meadey), an obsessive hardnosed criminal in an attempt to sell off the Uranium to the highest bidder.

                The musical score of The Hot Potato was created by British composer Guy Farley, considered by many to be one of the leading composers in the international movie scene.  Farley has worked in seemingly every composing medium, collaborating on music with pop stars and producers, composing music for advertisements for such lucrative companies as Motorola, Compaq and more, and composing musical scores for television series and movies like The Flock, The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey and The Broken.

                Without knowing what this film was about, as I listened to the soundtrack I was immediately convinced that the movie was a comedy.  I also knew that the movie took place sometime near the 1970s.  My reasoning came from the quirky jazz sound that reminded me of older spy comedies like The Pink Panther and older action thrillers like the 007 and Dirty Harry films.  There was definitely a comedic tinge from the very first tracks on the album.  Picture someone trying to sneak up on another person in an older comedy or cartoon.  The character uses exaggerated movements which are punctuated by the bass sounds of a tuba and the high sounds of the flute.  Therein lies the main theme of the album's score.

                I enjoyed the jazz sound of the album - the wire brush striking the snares and cymbals, the brassy horns, the clarinets and the like found in tracks like The Hot Potato, 30 Million Dollars, Car Chase and more - but I also like the light and airy classical tracks mixed in such as Bliss and Bruges, Snow in the Bruges and A Roma.  The entire The Hot Potato Soundtrack is a whole lot of fun and a perfect throw back to the musical scores of 60s and 70s films of this genre.  I would definitely recommend this film to fans of the old Pink Panther or 007 films and to anyone who is a fan of that era's jazz scene.


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